Auburn, Ala.—Friday’s Class 4A final shaped up to be perhaps the most evenly matched of any in the 2012 Super Six, but speedy sophomore running back Troy Dixon from UMS-Wright had other ideas. Scoring on runs of 52, 61, and 74 yards on the way to MVP honors, Dixon finished 232 yards on 23 carries as the Bulldogs broke open a close game to pound previously undefeated Oneonta 42-14. It was the first title for Coach Terry Curtis’ team since 2008 and it came in convincing fashion.
“I could not be more proud,” Curtis said. “I thought the key today was being physical because we knew what kind of we were playing. They were 14-0 for a reason. I thought we got in there and fought and fought. I thought the play right before the half, the fumble, was probably the turning point in the whole game.”
Following an opening drive for a touchdown by Oneonta, UMS-Wright responded with a drive of its down to tie the game late in the first quarter. Taking over on the 37 of the Redskins following a failed fourth down attempt, the Bulldogs drove to the one-yard line where quarterback Gunner Roach punched it in for the touchdown to tie the game.
Getting the ball back after the defense forced an Oneonta punt, UMS-Wright went back to work, driving from its own 24 to the 48 before the first of Dixon’s three big runs. On a first and 10 from the 48 he bounced outside and raced for the 52-yard score to put his team up by a touchdown.
Later in the quarter Dixon again put his stamp on his championship game as his 61-yard jaunt made it a 21-7 lead, setting up what Curtis called the biggest play in the game. Taking over on their own 30 with just 1:55 left in the half, the Redskins moved the ball to the UMS-Wright three with just :18 seconds remaining in the first half. Running back Tyler Smith got the call and stretched for the endzone, but Bulldogs’ safety Sam Pettway knocked the ball loose and it was recovered by teammate Tyler Beard to end the threat and keep UMS-Wright ahead at the break.
After that it was all Bulldogs as Roach hit wide receiver T.J. Dixon for a 33-yard touchdown on third and 32 to make it a 28-14 lead for UMS-Wright. That’s how things stood in the fourth quarter when a defensive play put one of the final nails in Oneonta’s coffin. From his own 22-yard line, Oneonta quarterback Cody O’Toole attempted a screen pass, but K.J. Traywick stepped in front of the errant throw and rumbled into the endzone for a 19-yard touchdown. Dixon then fittingly finished off the Redskins by racing 74 yards for the final touchdown of the game.
“This is unreal,” Dixon said. “Our line did a great job. They worked extremely hard all week and really came out and executed today. Our running game sort of found its bread and butter late in the game.”
The title was the sixth for UMS-Wright in seven trips to the championship game.